Sunday, February 10, 2013


Has it been that long?  Yes, it has.  It's been forever.  But I haven't actually been silent.  I'm just blogging about books here.  So mosey on over and check that out.  Maybe if I have time I'll throw some things up here, but for now, it's just books.

If you are curious about how my year of trash-free eating went, the answer is: awesome. I am still buying mostly in bulk and only buying packaged food that can not be gotten unpackaged.  Example: coconut oil, seaweed, miso (unless I want to drive 2 hours to a co-op that does carry it in bulk, which I don't), tempeh, etc. Not too shabby.

Trash output in this house that contains two humans, two cats, and a snake: one grocery bag a month, one small compost bucket a week.

Before you start yelling about the grocery bags, yes I do use reusable bags when I shop.  These are foraged bags from work that were going to be discarded anyway.  Many of them are paper.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

More feelings toward trash-free eating

All and all, this diet is going just as well today as it was when I started. I'm happily chowing down on fresh fruits and veggies and I even made some cloth bags to get bulk produce in. My trips tot he store have to be far more calculated than ever before (especially now since many of the roads to my favorite co-ops have been damaged by the hurricane), but my everyday needs are easily met by the farmer's market and the local health food store.

We had a pot luck at work today, so last night I made some yummy peanut butter oatmeal cookies (nom nom nom). The food was mostly crappy stuff I would never touch, but OH MY GOD SOMEONE BROUGHT TRISCUITS! My immediate reaction was something along the lines of "come to me my precious, salty, crunchy, heaven-in-a-box treat!" I proceeded to eat a few more than I probably should have, but I would like to see your self-control when paired with a stack of Triscuits after abstaining from any form of packaged food for months on end. Those crackers won't stand a chance.

Baby spinach was also on the pot-luck menu. I took a few bites because I thought I should have some greens with lunch, if available. Mistake. Another side effect of only eating fresh unpackaged foods, is that packaged produce tastes terrible. Like eating leafy cardboard. I dumped some homemade salsa on it (made with tomatoes, peppers, onions and cilantro right from the garden) and that improved it considerably.

Then I ate a few more Triscuits.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Reflections on month three

OK. I figured out the hardest part of the no-trash diet. It's this blog. My spare time is down to almost nothing right now, so when I have it, I don't usually want to spend it writing in the blog. I have books to write about and recipes to post and a few stories about food trash. I went to SolarFest and NYC and thought about food waste and thing to put in this blog the whole time, but sitting down to write... eh. So I'm sorry. Kind of. But I did conquer the mountain of dishes in the sink and I plan to make a blueberry pie today, so maybe I'll snap some pictures and do a post when I finally crash-land on the couch. Cross your fingers.

Just know that even though my dedication to blogging is not so much, I'm still 100% on my year of no food waste.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Zucchini Salad

2-3 green onions
1 Large green zucchini
1 Large yellow zucchini (summer squash)
1 Large any other kind of in season squash (globe, pattypan, scallopini, etc)
1 Large cucumber
2 Large carrots , or 3-4 small ones
2 T Olive oil (not extra virgin) or veggie oil if you prefer
½ t Garam Masala
AC vinegar

Chop up green onion and dice squashes into bite-sized cubes. Heat oil in a large pan, add garam masala and turn heat to med-low. Add onion and toss until coated, then add squashes. Salt to taste. While the squash is cooking, chop the cucumber into bite sized chunks and set aside. Continue cooking squash and turning in pan until it's cooked and a bit soft, but still has a bit of crunch. This should only take a few minutes.

Remove from heat and transfer into a large glass food storage container. Allow it to cool to room temperature, then add cucumbers, mix and put in fridge. Store until cool.

Grate carrots into a small bowl and add some AC vinegar and a sprinkle of sugar. Serve shredded carrot on top of squash salad.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chocolate Mint Rice Milk

½ recipe of rice milk found here. This will make extra, but cutting the recipe down even further seems silly. I added a handful of raw cashews to each blender batch.
2 T cocoa powder
2 T Raw sugar
3-4 fresh mint leaves, bruised a bit to draw out flavor

Fill blender with rice milk, add cocoa, sugar and mint. Blend. Taste and adjust. Strain into small mason jars for single serving travel cups. Shake well before serving.

I actually didn't strain mine because I don't mind the mint particles, but some people might. You'll also want to make this as close to the time you're going to use it a possible, because in my experience, this rice milk does not keep very long.

Monday, July 25, 2011

White Bean Hummus

2 cups cooked white beans
1 large clove garlic (or about 4 scapes, depending on size and season)
4T olive oil
2T tahini
2T AC vinegar or lemon juice
Salt to taste

Throw everything but the water into a food processor and process until smooth. Add a little water at a time until you reach the consistency you are looking for. Hummus is a completely personal experience, and rather hard to ruin. Adjust flavors to suit your palate. You can use more olive oil and less water to get a richer flavor, but water works if you're on tight budget or running low on oil.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Paper plate picnics are for parasites

Grab your bonnet honey, we are going on a picnic!I was reading this silly thing on the internet about famous picnics in literature and I suddenly got an unsurpressable urge to have a picnic. What better day than July 4th? My friend Gravy was coming to town that day to hang out, so I decided to drag him along. The weather has been hot and humid so I wanted something that would be cold and refreshing, but not too simplistic like macaroni salad and veggie burgers. At the farmer's market on Sunday the stalls seemed to be overflowing with zucchinis of all shapes and sizes, so I grabbed some greens and yellows and started a mental meal planner. Cold, seared zucchini with cucumbers, shredded carrots and white bean hummus. Perfect.

Monday finally came and I headed to the kitchen to start my plans when I realized that the perfect companion to this meal would be pita bread. Being on a no-trash diet means making everything from scratch, and I was out of yeast. The health food store in town pre-bags all of their bulk yeast, so I have to make special arrangements to fill up my own jar, which doesn't work for last-minute plans. I also realized that chocolate milk would be needed. Obviously. As usual, my quick projects turned into huge and frantic undertakings.

Rice milk takes about three hours to make and a big pot, which I didn't own. I decided to finally use that money the parents sent me as a house warming gift and bopped over to the local kitchen store to buy a nice stainless steel stewing pot. Then I scurried over to a friend's house to snag a few teaspoons of yeast. 1:30pm and I hadn't even started yet! The pita would need time to rise as well! At least the white beans were done though.

Gravy got to my place a little after 2pm and I put him to work shredding carrots while I cooked the zucchini. When the rice was done cooking I put him in charge of straining, and he promptly spilled a bunch of it all over my pristine kitchen. Taking deep breaths is the key to sharing a kitchen. Luckily he brought his dog who took care of anything that managed to make it to the ground. Hummus in the food processor, cocoa in the rice milk, zucchini in the fridge, pitas on the counter cooling and all at once the food was together in time for picnic supper. A July 4th miracle!

Everything got packed in reusable containers. I took two normal, totally breakable and oh-man-I-have-to-wash-these-when-we're-done plates and forgot the spoon for serving (good thing I remembered a cloth napkin when our fingers had to be used instead). Everything got carefully packed into two fabric bags along with a blanket and some hippy-dippy bug spray. Presto! Delicious trash-free picnic!

Along comes another multi-part post of recipes; White bean hummus, zucchini salad, and chocolate-mint rice milk. I won't be posting the pita recipe because it wasn't mine and it didn't turn out as I had planned. Mine were a semi-failure and Gravy laughed at my dismay. Jerk. If anyone has any good pita bread recipes to share, please do!